Thursday, December 3, 2015

granny blanket : velvet & lace + mistletoe

Hey there!

Remember me?  The girl who's been working on a 12" granny square blanket since January?  I'm back with two more squares, and am admittedly feeling a bit relieved that next week is the last square before joining {breathing a little sigh of relief}.  Big projects are often like that, aren't they?  They begin with a burst of excitement and anticipation and then, by the end, teeter off with exhaustion (at least that's how this one feels for me).

WEEK FORTY EIGHT || Velvet & Lace
by Priscilla Hewitt

WEEK FORTY NINE || Mistletoe
by April Moreland

Thursday, November 19, 2015

granny blanket : fountain of roses

Hey, hey, hey!
I was really hoping to get this post up on Monday, and then it was Tuesday, and well, the week got away from me from there.  But better late than never, right?  And we are quickly approaching the end of our square patterns and it will soon be time to begin the daunting super fun task of joining 50 squares!

WEEK 47 || Fountain of Roses
by Shan Sevcik

This is such a pretty square.  I love the center clustered flower, and the way it poofs up when you stitch the backside.  I wish my square had more room for the beautiful roses around the outside.  Lots of interesting combinations of stitches here!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

crochet : christmas baubles

Hello, friends!  Thanks so much for popping in.  
Yesterday, here in the States, we observed Veterans' Day to honor the people who serve in courage to protect our country and freedoms that we so often take for granted.  I spent the mid-week day off from work hooking up some Christmas baubles.

They are super fun to make and work up fairly quickly.  I am excited to make bunches of baubles to give as gifts this holiday season.  

If you would like to hook up some of your own, I am happy to share the pattern with you:

Materials: size F hook, dk weight yarn (or light weight worsted), 3" glass or plastic ornament bulbs
Finish each round with a slip stitch join and fasten off.
round 1: in a magic circle, ch3, 11dc {12dc}
round 2: working between each dc from round 1 (not in top of stitch) work 1 hdc, ch1around {12 hdc, 12 ch1 spaces}
round 3: 3dc cluster, ch 1 in each ch1 space. (YO, insert hook in space, pull up loop, YO, pull through 2 loops, repeat 3 times, then YO pull through all 4 loops) {12 3dccl, 12 ch1 spaces}
round 4: sc in each of the 2 stitches of the clusters (the large stitch of the cluster & the chain stitch), dc in space between stitches {24 sc, 12 dc}
round 5: dc in each of the 2 sc from rnd 4, ch1 sk dc (24 dc, 12 ch1 spaces}
round 6: 2hdc in ch spaces, 1hdc between 2dc from rnd 5 {36 hdc)

Make 2 and don't fasten off the final round of the second medallion.  Weave in all ends.  
Place the two sides together, right sides facing out, and slip stitch all the way around to join.  Go around about 3/4 of the way, insert the bulb and continue slip stitch joining.  

I gave a full tutorial on Periscope and the replay from Katch is embedded below.
You can check out the rest of my crafty Scopes at Katch.
Join me on Periscope for more crafty scoping fun!

Monday, November 9, 2015

granny blanket : chocolate delight

Good Monday Morning!
Holy smokes!  I'm on time with this week's square!
{and I ordered our Christmas cards this weekend!}
I think I've been abducted by aliens.  This is on not like me!  But I like it.
On to this week's square:

WEEK FORTY SIX || Chocolate Delight

Have a wonderful week!

Monday, November 2, 2015

granny blanket : lotus pavilions & kata

Happy November!
How is it November already?!  Halloween is over, and Christmas has hit the stores in full force.  And we are winding down with the last handful of granny squares to complete our blanket.  

WEEK FORTY FOUR || Lotus Pavilions
This is another favorite square.  I love the way the back-post crochet makes the stitches pop, and the lines the pattern creates.
I did omit the last 3 rounds, ending instead with round 12.  My round 13 went like this:
in corner: 3sc
*sk 1 stitch, sc in next 5, {dc 2 tog, sc in next 2} x2, dc 2 tog, dc, hdc, 2sc, sc 2 tog at top of point, 2sc,  hdc, dc, dc 2 tog, {2sc, dc 2 tog} x 2, sc in next 4, sk 1 stitch, 3sc in corner Repeat from * around and join with sl st to first sc.

I had hooked up this block for the first granny blanket I ever made.  It's a beautiful square and fun to hook up the various clusters.  

Monday, October 26, 2015

granny blanket : 2 more squares

Hello, there!  
Is it just me, or are these weeks whipping by faster than I can chug down a Pumpkin Spice Latte?!  I can't keep up these days, and I've stopped pretending that I can.  
My planner is chock full of places to go and things to do.
Life is pulling in every direction.
I've got more thoughts in my head than I have hours in the day.

And sadly, this blog is the first thing to fall to the bottom of the list.
Well, let's get on with it.  There's grocery shopping to be done, a car to drop at the shop, a kid to take to the orthodontist, homework to be done, dinner to make, oh and I'll be thrilled if I can squeeze in a five minute shower.  

WEEK FORTY TWO || Anticipation Mystery
by Margaret MacInnis

WEEK FORTY THREE || Ribs and Lace
by Joyce Lewis

This square was hooking up a little large (which I knew it would based on the pattern and the hook size she used). I had to make a few alterations and omissions, and I even wrote them down, but now that I read my notes, I can't quickly figure out what I wrote to be able to translate it to you. :(  What kind of blogger am I?!

It is week 43 friends, but I have not hooked up this week's square yet.  Hoping I can snag some crochet minutes this week and share two more squares with you next Monday.  You can find the pattern here.

Monday, October 12, 2015

granny blanket : fan dance & birthday flower

Happy Monday!
I have missed you all.  I'm here to day to share 2 of the 3 squares for the 12" granny blanket.  No time to chit chat; I have a boatload of stuff to get done today (including grocery shopping so that I can feed my poor family this week!).

WEEK FORTY || Fan Dance

 I discovered in the last round that I made a mistake in the yellow round.  Someday, I may go back and fix it, but a bigger part of me wants to leave it as a little symbol of imperfection.

WEEK FORTY ONE || Birthday Flower
By Chris Simon

This square is in honor of my husband's birthday.

I will be sharing two more squares next week to be caught up on this blanket.  To see the list of patterns we're using, please see this post.

Thanks so much for visiting!  
Have a fabulous week!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

family meeting : free printable

Through the years, we have sporadically held a family meeting on Sunday evenings.  With a new school year beginning and with it, all the craziness of the hockey season, homework, and work for me I am hoping to get back to this tradition on a more consistent basis.

I made a printable using adorable frames created by Barb at Second Chance to Dream {you can see her original Summer Goal Setting printable here}.  Thanks so much, Barb for allowing me to share my printable!
You can download your own with the Box link at the bottom of this post.

Here's how we use it.  
1. Roles  Each person chooses a role for the meeting
     Encourager: is the supportive voice to make sure we all remain encouraging
     Note Recorder: records the info on the laminated agenda sheet with a wet erase marker.  This gets
        hung in our kitchen for the week.  The recorder may also be asked to record other notes and 
        tasks if needed.
     Menu Chalker: chalks the dinners for the week on our menu chalkboard
     Agenda Tracker: keeps us moving through the agenda and on track with our time.  We try to keep 
        our meetings to around 15 minutes.
     Reader: reads the calendar and the info from the previous week's agenda.
        We are a family of 5 so this gives everyone a role, but you can adjust them to fit your family.

2.  The Week Ahead  
     Calendar: We begin our meetings by looking at the calendar for the week, and figuring out which 
        parent is taking which child to their events.  We cross check our calendars (iCals) with the large 
        family paper calendar and make sure everything lines up.  We make note of any special to dos 
        associated with the calendar.
     Menu: Knowing the calendar helps us figure out what meals will look like for the week: when do 
        we need to use the crock pot or grab take out or have a quick-cooking meal.  Everyone offers up 
        suggestions for a meal they would like and the menu board gets filled out along with the initial  
        of the child who will help cook that night.
     Connection: We plan for a family connection time: family movie night, game night, knee hockey 
        game, whatever.  This is a time we schedule for the whole family to get together for an hour or 
        2 each week.  We note it on the agenda and add it to the calendar.
     Other: Any other things that need to be discussed.  We hang a sheet of notebook paper near the 
        agenda for anyone to write down anything that might need to be discussed at the family meeting.

3.  Highs and Lows We discuss what worked this week and what didn't.  These can be family related 
        (like calm discussions or hectic mornings), or personal (like studying and earning an A or not 
        getting enough exercise). We try to focus on the positives (here's where that encourager role 
        comes in) and then make a plan for what needs to be worked on as a family (like cleaning up our 

4.  Goals Each person sets a goal for the week which gets recorded.  Throughout the week we check 
        in on each other (ok, mostly I check in on them) to see how they are doing with their goal.  

And that's it!  
Here's a link to the Family Meeting Agenda pdf

Monday, September 21, 2015

granny blanket : fall blossom

Hello, hello!  Happy Monday!  It's not morning, but at least it's still Monday so I'm officially not late.
This week's square is a bit of a doozy.  And I have to admit that I thought about giving up on it {more than once}.  Luckily, Aurora, the designer, included helpful videos to walk me through where to place the front post stitches in the blossom.  

WEEK THIRTY NINE || Fall Blossom
It is a pretty square.  If I had it to do over again, I would have made an additional color change in the flower to accent the petals a bit more. But after ripping this one out so many times, I honestly just wanted to be done with it.

I did add a white trim of sc around the flower and tacked the petals during round 10 rather than round 11.  I also ended the square after round 12 with a round of sc to make it fit my blanket.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

granny blanket : september flower

Good fake Monday morning to you!  I don't know where this week went.  I swear it was just Sunday. No matter, it's already almost the weekend again!

WEEK THIRTY EIGHT || September Flower

I did alter the pattern when the circle became extremely wavy.  I was going to frog the whole thing, but checked with others on Ravelry who had hooked the square.  I followed the recommendation of one crocheter and ended up making the following changes to the pattern beginning with round 8:

Round 8: instead of 4 dc in each middle stitch from round 6, work 3dc (48 dc, 16 ch1 spaces)

Round 9: follow pattern for a total of (64sc)

Round 10: follow pattern tacking with every 4th sc in top of trc petal stitch. (64sc)

Round 11: follow pattern for a total of (64sc)

Round 12: Begin corner to right of any tacking sc on any petal with [{2trc ch1 2trc} in same stitch.  Into each stitch across side, work: trc, dc 2x, hdc 2x, sc 5x, hdc 2x, dc 2x, trc. ] Repeat [ ]around for 3 more sides and corners (76)

Round 13: corner [{2dc ch2 2dc} in corner ch1 space  Into each stitch across side work dc 2x, hdc 4x, sc 7x, hdc 4x, dc 2x.] Repeat [ ] around for 3 more sides and corners (92)

Round 14: follow pattern (104sc)

Round 15: instead of sc, work dc (112dc)

Round 16: follow pattern with sc around (120c)

Round 17: instead of sc, work dc, with {dc, ch2, dc} for corner (124 dc)

Monday, September 7, 2015

granny blanket : 2 squares

Happy Labor Day!  
I'm so grateful to have this 3-day weekend to do a ton of catch up.
We returned to school this past week, and I went from staying home full time for the summer to working 5 full days. It's been a bit of a shock to my system after 74 consecutive lazy-dayz of summer!  Slowly, I am adjusting to our new normal around here, the routines, the homework, the hockey practices, the dinner planning, prepping and cooking.  It has been one heck of a week!

But I do feel like I am crawling back on top and will hopefully be organized by tonight for the week ahead.  So let's get on with last week's and this week's squares.

WEEK THIRTY SIX || Drop in the Bucket
by Janie Herrin

 This was a fast little square to hook up.  The pattern was very easy to follow and predictable.

WEEK THIRTY SEVEN || 10-Petal Flower
by Joyce Lewis
 This was a fun square to hook.  I love the look of the surface crochet in the center of the flower created in the last round of the pattern.  I did three different color changes: yellow for round 1, white for round 2, and pink for rounds 3 & 4; as opposed to the single color the pattern calls for.  I also added a round of hdc between rounds 9 & 10 to fit my blanket.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

podcast love : my top 7

This post does not contain any crochet.  What the wha?  Instead, I wanted to share one of the things I like to do while crocheting:

Here's a list of the ones I love.  If you're a podcast listener or want to try some out, I recommend these.

Elise Blaha Cripe of Elise Gets Crafty: Elise hosts a weekly guest interview that discusses the creative entrepreneur and small business ownership.

Jess Lively of The Lively Show: Each week, Jess hosts a guest and focusses on creativity, inspiration, and her tag-line "living with intention"

Jeff Goins of The Portfolio Life: Jeff's podcasts beg you to find your voice.  Many of the episodes focus on writers and writing but they inspire the listener to pursue your dreams and "live your epic life"

Gretchen Rubin of Happier: Gretchen, the author of the bestselling book The Happiness Project, cohosts a podcast with her sister.  Each week they challenge their listeners to "try this at home" and end each of their broadcasts with "gold stars and demerits."  Gretchen and Elizabeth always leave you with something to think about.

Tsh Oxenrider of The Simple Show: This is Tsh's new podcast after several years of broadcasting as The Art of Simple.  The show focusses on simple living and living with your life's purpose.  

This American Life for Serial: Serial's first season debuted last fall, but I am including it in my list because it is crazy good if you like murder mysteries of the real-life variety.  This is a true "who-done-it" that keeps you guessing week after week.  Season two is slated to begin later this year!

Angela Watson of Truth for Teachers: Angela's weekly show (now in it's 2nd season) is filled with great teacher tips and nuggets of inspiration to motivate and help you reflect on your teaching.